In their investigation into a threat that allegedly was made in the Barharwa toll plaza bidding case, Jharkhand Police have found Pankaj Mishra, the representative of Chief Minister Hemant Soren, and minister Alamgir Alam ‘innocent’. The significance of this case lies in the fact that this case had been the genesis of the Enforcement Directorate’s ECIR (equivalent to an FIR) of the money laundering case against Mishra.
As a result of his alleged involvement in the illegal mining case of Rs 1,000 crore, Mishra is currently under judicial custody. In this case, the ED also questioned Soren.
The accused, Pankaj Mishra and MLA-cum-minister Alamgir Alam, have been found innocent after investigating the facts and witnesses. According to the DIG (Santhal Pargana range), Sudarshan Prasad Mandal, an arrest warrant has been issued against eight other suspects.
It was filed at the request of Sambhu Nandan Kumar, who alleged that he had been threatened by Mishra on June 22, 2020, as a result of his participation in the bidding process for the Barharwa toll plaza. Mishra allegedly instructed Kumar over the phone “not to participate” in the bidding process, and when Kumar refused, he was attacked by a mob at Mishra’s command.
This was primarily done to gain control of six toll plazas on the route connecting the mining sites, which are under the jurisdiction of Barharwa Nagar Panchayat.
“Controlling these tolls would have enabled Mishra and his accomplices to maintain control over the area… this would have allowed the ED to easily monitor how many vehicles were transporting mining proceeds, as well as how much levies were being collected,” the prosecution complaint stated.